Translate Poems in English into ENGLISH!!!!
I’m getting on a plane to New Orleans today. Instead of writing a long post, I thought I’d offer a few interesting “translations” of some of my favorite quotations. The first is from “The Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock;” the second is an oft-repeated slogan from Marshall McLuhan. Enjoy!
English-to-English Translation #1
What Tommy Stearns Eliot meant when he said “I wish I were a pair of ragged claws” is Eat my human heart out, won’t you please, for these carpet-tunneled typewritten hands cracking dawn before Lloyds Bank give me the bends as my Vivid batlady snores up straightjacketed sheep bleating ten pound notes against the bed post; it means I’m so shanty shanty assbad that if I wrote a scuttled clause it’s cuz I wanted to.
<originally published in Short, Fast, and Deadly January 2013>
English-to-English Translation #2
What Marshy McLuhan really meant by “the medium is the message” is a guaranteed pick up line: Step one, lean in nose close; Step two, howl LOVE ME! LOVE ME! If yet loveless, cry piteously (step trois) until relationshipped. Repeat murderously in prime time. When you lick that obstinate smear on the TV, it slips you the tongue electric, flashing a pixel patch of wet spectrum like a randy aspect ratio.
Your turn. Take a well-known but esoteric English quotation and translate it into your English.